Losing your AirPods is one thing but what happens when you lose the AirPod’s case? Is there a way to find a lost AirPod case? Losing an AirPods case is hugely frustrating because without it you can’t charge your AirPods.
Without a case, the AirPods are practically useless. What can you do? Let’s take a look at your options. I’ll also cover some preventative measures to secure your AirPod’s case in the future.
How to Find AirPod’s Case
- Open the FindMy app on your iPhone
- Tap on devices and select your AirPods Pro
- Select Charging Case
- Tap Play Sound or Find
- When you press Play sound, should hear a chime from the AirPods case.
- If your case is out of Bluetooth range, FindMy will show the last location on a map with precision tracking.
AirPod products that support FindMy charging case location tracking:
- AirPods 3rd Generation
- AirPods Pro (1st or 2nd Generation)
- AirPods Max
Bear in mind, if your AirPod case is out of Bluetooth range, the play sound feature will not be available. Instead, use the location tracking feature, which shows the location where the AirPods were last connected to the case.
The latest generation of AirPods, AirPods 3rd Generation, added a speaker to the AirPod case as well as the option to find the precise location of the case with the Find My app. It also added the AirPods to the Find My Network which allows other nearby Apple devices to ping the AirPods.
The new AirPods also support precision tracking although it’s not available in all regions at the moment. Tap the Find button next to your AirPod case. Now, walk around and point your phone in different directions, following the on-screen cues, until you find your AirPod case.
With the latest generation, the products are split into individual units; Left Bud, Right Bud, and Charging Case, making it easier to narrow down your search.
For more information, take a look at Apple’s official lost AirPod guide.
Lost mode is only available on 2nd and 3rd-generation AirPods. To enable Lost mode, swipe up on the Find My app and tap Activate under Mark as Lost.
When the lost mode is enabled, you will receive a notification when the case is found. The case is linked to your Apple ID so no other Apple users can use it. You can also choose to leave a message when a phone attempts to connect to the case.
If you leave your contact information in the message section, there’s a chance someone will return your AirPod case to you later on.
Swipe up on the device you want to track on Find My and under Notifications enable “Notify When Left Behind”. If you leave the area, a notification will appear on your phone reminding you that one of your AirPod pieces has been left behind.
Find AirPod Case 1st Generation
The AirPods charging case on 1st generation AirPods does not have a built-in speaker or location tracking features. You won’t have the option to track the case from the Find My app, only the AirPod buds will be listed.
If your AirPods are in the case, you can get an approximate idea of the last location by checking the Find My app and selecting AirPods. Bear in mind, when your AirPods are in a case, they won’t play a sound because they’re disconnected from Bluetooth.
“AirPods are Offline” or “No Location Found”
You might run into an error on Find My that says AirPods are offline or no location found. When you see that error, it means your AirPods (or AirPod case) are out of range or out of battery. The alternative is to use the map feature to find the last location where they were powered on.
AirPods Not Showing on FindMy App
- Open Settings
- Tap your Apple ID
- Tap on Find My
- Enable Find my iPhone, Find My Network, and Send Last Location.
- Sign in with a personal Apple ID (The Find My app won’t work with managed accounts)
- Update to IOS 16.1 or Mac OS Ventura
- Remove AirPods from your device and repair them
- Reset your AirPods to factory settings
Get an AirPod Case Replacement
Request a Replacement AirPod Case from Apple
Apple allows customers to order an AirPods case replacement. Your best option would be to contact Apple and request an AirPods case replacement using the official Apple repair website.
You can also visit an Apple Store and ask for a replacement case, but make sure to bring your AirPods as proof of purchase, the receipt, or the original AirPods shipping box.
In most cases, an Apple Center will grant you a replacement case. However, it will likely cost $69 or more.
Buying an AirPods replacement case from Apple is cheaper than buying a whole new set of AirPods. A replacement case will need to be repaired with your AirPods once again.
Now there’s another option:
Buy a Third-Party AirPod Charging Case
Buy a third-party AirPods case. While this option is not ideal for people who paid for a premium brand-name product, it’s a way to save some money.
The thing is AirPods cases, particularly the older generations, don’t do much besides provide a Bluetooth connection to the AirPods and charge them.
There are plenty of third-party AirPods cases that you can find online that can charge the AirPods. They’re also cheaper than buying a replacement case from Apple. Just make sure the case you buy matches the same generation of AirPods you have, or they might not fit in the case.
Some of these third-party cases also include security features that Apple failed to include, such as a keychain attachment, making them easier to find. Not to mention third-party AirPod cases come in a wide variety of styles, colours, and designs. So that’s an alternative to getting a replacement AirPod case from Apple.
Unfortunately, if you lose the AirPod case, there’s no way to get a free replacement from Apple.
How to Stop Losing Your AirPod Case
Once you have a new AirPod case, there are some steps you can take to make it easier to find, if you happen to lose it again. It’s a good idea to take some preventative measures.
Buy an AirPods Case Cover with a Key Ring
These are like a protective case for your AirPod charging case; you slide the AirPods case into the cover and it will keep it secure.
I recommend buying an AirPod case cover that has a keychain or hooks to attach other items to. It’s a really cheap accessory and it can save you the hassle of spending $69 or more on a case replacement.
Here’s one good case available on Amazon:
Attach an Air Tag to Your AirPod’s Case
For this idea, you will need an Air Tag which is sometimes included in purchases of new Apple products.
Air Tags are Apple’s new location-tracking devices that help you track belongings like backpacks and suitcases. Air Tags can piggyback and be pinged by any nearby iPhone, making them easy to locate.
Just remember Air Tags only work if another iPhone is near, and even then, they’ll only be detectable within 15 feet. Within 15 ft, the precision tracking will turn on, showing an arrow pointing towards the Air Tag and the approximate distance.
So the idea is to attach an Air Tag to your AirPods case. Unfortunately, the original AirPod cases don’t have a hook for attachments, and the Air Tags also don’t have a loop for accessories.
However, if you buy an AirPod case cover that has a hook and then an Air Tag key ring you can attach them to one another. With this DIY trick, you’ll be able to track the location of your AirPod’s case anywhere, as long it’s near an Apple device.
Note: The latest generation of AirPods allows you to track the AirPod case, so these third-party trackers would only be useful for older AirPod generations.
Attach Contact Information to Your AirPod Case
If you bought an AirPod case cover that has a hook for accessories, you can attach a little nametag keyring or note that contains your contact information.
You can write information such as your name, phone number, or PO box. That way if somebody finds your AirPods case they can easily figure out who to return it to.
The Bottom Line
Luckily, the latest generation of AirPods has added a Play Sound and Find on Map service to the AirPod charging case.
Unfortunately, if you’re using an older generation, there’s no way to locate the AirPod charging case without physically searching the area.
However, you can request a replacement from Apple, order an official case online, or buy a third-party charging case. In most cases, a replacement from Apple will cost $69 from an official Apple store.
When you have a new case, you can make it easier for people to return it by using an AirPod case cover and attaching contact information to it. You can also consider hanging an Air Tag on the case, so you can track it from your iPhone.
Generally, I recommend upgrading to the latest generation of AirPods because the new tracking features are very helpful.